As reported in The Telegram last weekend, the Toronto Maple Leafs have officially named Ryane Clowe head coach of the Newfoundland Growlers.
Clowe, born in St. John's and raised in Fermeuse and Mount Pearl, joins the Growlers after a two-year stint as an assistant coach with the National Hockey League’s New Jersey Devils.
Clowe will be employed by the Leafs, who will be affiliated with the Growlers next season.
He enjoyed a 10-year NHL career. His 561 career NHL games are fourth-most amongst Newfoundlanders who have played in the NHL.
In Clowe, owner of a 10-year NHL career and one of the most popular athletes ever to hail from this province, the Growlers have what is quite likely the face of the franchise.
“We want to pride ourselves as a first class organization in every way,” said Growlers CEO Glenn Stanford, “and no question having someone of Ryane’s quality fit into the whole philosophy of ensuring we have a top-notch professional hockey team in Newfoundland.”
Stanford and Leafs’ assistant general manager Laurence Gilman said the Growlers job generated a lot of interest within the hockey world, and while it certainly helped that Clowe was from Newfoundland and Labrador, it wasn’t the sole reason he was hired.
“The most important thing,” Stanford said, “was to get the right coach. There were some very, very good people interviewed. If it happened to be that is was someone who could be the face of the organization, that’s fine. But the important thing was getting the best coach, and I think we did that.”
“His experience and connection with the area,” said Maple Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas, “along with the potential he has shown in coaching make Ryane the best fit for our program.”